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A Quick Refresher On The Difference Between These Top 4 Braiding Hair Extensions

Searching for your next protective hairstyle?

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By Bukky Ojeifo · March 10, 2017

The search for your next protective style is a daunting task, but selecting a specific hair type for executing styles such as braids, twists and cornrows can also be confusing! We’ve created a quick and easy easy guide for learning the differences between the top 4 leading extension brands in your local beauty aisle! Check it out below:

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Name/Origin: "X-pressions" is the actual name of the company that produces the X-pressions hair. The company has been producing this hair in Africa since 1997. Their motto with all their products is "diligence, honesty and sincerity.

*Fun Fact: X-pressions hair is technically 100% Kanekalon. The only difference it that this hair is processed to be smoother, softer and neater.

Synthetic or Human: Synthetic

Heavy or Light: Light

Price: Xpressions is a bit more expensive than regular Kanekalon hair, A single pack of "Xpressions" will run you about $5.

Best Styles: Box braids, Senegalese twists, cornrows, and feed-in cornrows

Best place to purchase the hair: Your local beauty supply store

Jeffrey Mayer

Name/Origin: Kanekalo is a particular type of synthetic hair that has been used since the 1980s.

Synthetic or Human: Synthetic

Heavy or Light: Kanekalon hair is light, but as with all styles, can become heavy depending on size and length of style.

Price: Of all the extension braiding brands, Kanekalon tends to cost the least. At most beauty supply stores, you can get 3 packs for around $5.

Best Styles: Box braids, Senegalese twists and cornrows

Best place to purchase: Local beauty supply store

Yuri Arcurs/Peoplelmages.com

Name/Origin: It's rumored that the name"Marley hair" was inspired by the first family of Reggae: the Marleys! The inspiration was to have extension braiding hair that closely resembles the natural afro-kinky coily texture that most naturalistas have!

Synthetic or Human: Synthetic

Heavy or Light: It is generally light, but can become heavier depending in the size and length of your individual twists.

Best Styles: Marley twists are the most popular, but this hair can be used for any natural twisted style that you desire. Also, Marley hair is generally used to wrap hair for faux locs!

Price: Marley Hair ranges in price, but generally you can grab a pack for about $3-$6 depending on where you purchase.

Best Place To Purchase The Hair: You can purchase this hair online or at your local beauty store.  

Rob Culpepper

Name/Origin: Although we were convinced "havana hair" would somehow trace back to Cuba, we weren't able to find its true origin outside of some useful information here

Synthetic or Human: Synthetic! It is made of a man-made fiber that is created to blend well with a wide range of different textures.

Texture: Soft, but highly textured and dense

Heavy or Light: Havana hair is soft, but is hefty in size, so it tends to be on the heavier side, especially when you have a lot of individual twists in your hair.

Best Styles: Havana hair is best for havana twists, but can also be used for cute twisted up-dos!

Price: Havana is one of the pricier options for protective styling. One pack will cost you about $13 and for a full head of twists, you'll need about 4-6 packs.

Best place to purchase: Online, through frequently reviewed sites like fingercomber.com.


(As always be sure to take care of your real hair while indulging in your favorite protective style this winter! Happy styling!)

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